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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Over 11,000 city workers in Los Angeles go on 24-hour strike


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Los Angeles: More than 11,000 city workers in Los Angeles, the second largest city in the United States, are walking off their job on Tuesday for a 24-hour strike.

Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 721, the largest public sector union in Southern California, said in a Facebook post that it staged a one-day walkout over “unfair labor practice.”

“We refuse to accept LA City’s bad faith bargaining efforts and repeated labor law violations. We strike today to demand respect and fight for our dignity,” the union noted.

SEIU Local 721, which represents more than 95,000 workers in Southern California, said on its website that its members include people working in hospitals, foster care, mental health, courts, law enforcement, libraries, street services, beach maintenance, sanitation, water treatment, parks services and watershed management.

The walkout is expected to disrupt public services large and small, reported the Los Angeles Times, the largest newspaper in the western United States.

At least some public swimming pools are expected to close for the day. Trash cans won’t be emptied, delaying refuse pickup by one day for the rest of the week, according to the report.

Each of the city’s animal shelters will be closed and traffic control officers may not be available for nighttime concerts, the report stated.

Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass insisted in a statement on Monday that “the City of Los Angeles is not going to shut down.”

“My office is implementing a plan ensuring no public safety or housing and homelessness emergency operations are impacted by this action. Like I said over the weekend, the City will always be available to make progress with SEIU 721 and we will continue bargaining in good faith,” she added.

In recent weeks, the United States has experienced an unprecedented surge in union activities and strikes, as workers across multiple industries take matters into their own hands.

The early headline-grabbers were the ongoing dual strike of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) representing about 160,000 actors and workers in television and film and the Writers Guild of America (WGA) representing about 11,500 screen writers.

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